Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Father's Day fun

This week it's all about the menfolk at hilary johnson handmade as we look forward to celebrating Father's Day on 21st June.  It's fair to say that our own chaps don't like a fuss and are busy making hay (literally while the sun shines), renewing the render on the front of the workshop and generally doing jobs that need doing - but we think they'd love a surprise like this on father's day...

Scones appear at most coffee mornings and bring-and-share teas here in deepest Devon and every family has its own recipe.  Ours is from the 1975 edition of Good Housekeeping Colour Cookery which is our absolute favourite no-nonsense recipe book (we like our cookery books how we like our bags - no superfluous details).  Enjoy those imperial measures!

Plain oven scones
1. Sift 8 oz of self-raising flour and 1/2 level tsp salt into a basin and rub in 1-2 oz fat with your fingertips.
2. Make a well in the centre and stir in enough milk (about 1/4 pint) to make a light spongy dough - just firm enough to handle.
3. Knead lightly on a floured board to remove any cracks then roll out to 1 inch thick.
4. Cut into shapes with a sharp cutter dipped in flour and place on a floured baking sheet.
5. Glaze with a beaten egg or milk.
6. Bake near the top of a hot oven (210 if it's a fan oven, 220-ish if not) for 7-10 minutes until well risen and nicely browned.
7. Ta-dah!

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

half term tassels

Rural Devon's been busy over the last week or so. The hedgerows are now so green that they almost look fake and nature has been inspired by Jackson Pollock judging by the huge splatters of yellow gorse, pink foxglove and white stitchwort that are strewn across the lanes.  The dawn chorus is deafening but joyful and life is bursting out of every tree, bank and barn.  And parallel to all of this is the nearly constant hum of tractors in the fields - the grass is lush and ready for harvest - this year's silage crop will be a tasty food supply for stock in the leaner winter months to come.

And being half term the rest of Devon life has been busy too - the annual Devon County Show drew in the crowds and with a spell of half decent weather the beaches and cafes soon filled up with smiley people dropping down a gear from their usual frenetic pace of life.

The studio has also been a hive of activity this week - there are some lovely things coming soon - beautiful bright totes with rugged brown leather straps, backpacks for commuters (and for those of us with kids who just can't get the hang of the octopus thing) - plus some bespoke commissions.

Talking of which here's a go-anywhere cross-body circular bag with a big tassel.  This subtle greyish pink leather is proving popular for SS15 - grab some before it all goes!